On 15 February 2013, an approximately 20-meter (66 feet) meteoroidNotes 1 entered Earth’s atmosphere over Russia, with a speed of 19.16 ± 0.15 kilometers per second (60,000-69,000 km/h or 40,000-42,900 mph). Its mass is estimated at 7,000 to 10,000 tons, one of the largest meteoroids entered Earth’s atmosphere in the recent history. Then, at 9:20 am local time (03:20 UTC), it exploded some 20 to 30 kilometers above the city of Chelyabinsk and created a gigantic fireball (known as a superbolideNotes 1) brighter than the Sun. An estimated 500 kilotons of energy was released by the explosion. For a comparison, the “Little Boy”, the atomic bomb dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945 exploded with an energy of approximately 15 kilotons of TNT. So, the Chelyabinsk meteor’s explosion was about 33 times stronger. The shock waves damaged several thousand buildings and injured approximately 1,500 people. No deaths were reported.
Scientists estimate such events occur on average once every 100 years. The most well-known was the Tunguska event, which occurred near the Stony Tunguska River in Yeniseysk Governorate (now Krasnoyarsk Krai), Russia, on the morning of 30 June 1908. It is also the largest impact event on Earth in recorded history. Studies have yielded different estimates of the meteoroid’s size, on the order of 60 to 190 meters (200 to 620 feet), depending on whether the body was a comet or a denser asteroid.
Continue reading Why meteoroids explode before they reach Earth?
There are a total of 1073 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the world (as of January 2018: 832 Cultural, 206 Natural and 35 Mixed). Here are the top 20 countries having the most number of UNESCO World Heritage sites.
What is a UNESCO World Heritage Site? According to the Wikipedia, “A World Heritage Site is a place (such as a building, city, complex, desert, forest, island, lake, monument, or mountain) that is listed by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as being of special cultural or physical significance.“
Continue reading Top 20 Countries having most number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites (2018 Update)
Here are the top ten most powerful earthquakes (by the Moment magnitude scale, MMS; denoted as Mw or M) in recorded history, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a scientific agency of the United States government.
Continue reading Top 10 Most Powerful Earthquakes in Recorded History
Oymyakon, a village in Oymyakonsky Ulus of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia), the Russian Federation, is considered as the coldest inhabited place on Earth. On February 6, 1933, a temperature of −67.7 °C (−90 °F) was recorded at Oymyakon’s weather station. The village is considered as one of the Pole of ColdsNotes 1 of the northern hemisphere.
Continue reading Watch: Daily Life in Oymyakon, the Coldest Inhabited Place on Earth – Amazing Video
The Earth is always changing. “The only thing that is constant is change“, as Heraclitus (c. 535 – c. 475 BC) the pre-Socratic Greek philosopher once said. Unfortunately, things do not always happen the way we would have wanted. Here are 10 recently lost natural wonders that have been disappeared in recent centuries or even decades.
Continue reading 10 Recently Lost Natural Wonders
Since the Neolithic revolution, humanity is building cities. Here are the top ten amazing facts about cities all around the world.
Continue reading Top 10 City Facts
Here is the second post of the 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders series. A few more amazing places on Earth, some of them even look extraterrestrial.
Continue reading 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders (II)
Here is the first post of the series: 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders (I).
The world’s deepest lake is the Lake Baikal, which has a depth of 1,642 meters (5,387 feet). It is a rift lake in the south of the Russian region of Siberia. Its bottom is at 4,215 feet (1,285 meters) below the sea level. In terms of volume, Lake Baikal is also the world’s largest freshwater lake; it contains roughly 20% of the world’s unfrozen surface fresh water with 23,615.39 cubic kilometers (5,700 cubic miles). It contains more water than that of all the North American Great Lakes combined.
Continue reading The deepest lake in the World: Lake Baikal
The age of the Earth is approximately 4.54 billion years. For all these years, our planet has been a work in progress: water, wind, air pressure, minerals, heat, and even extraterrestrial forces like meteors and comets mold and shape our environment, and created all manner of strange formations. Some of them are really beautiful: we call them “Natural wonders”. Some natural wonders are really famous, for example, the Grand Canyon or Victoria Falls. Some of them are lesser known, yet still stunning. Here are the 10 lesser known natural wonders of the World.
Continue reading 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders (I)
Here is the second post of the series: 10 Lesser Known Natural Wonders (II).